By Brian Keogh
Ronan Mullarney, Cameron Raymond, Conor O’Rourke and Stuart Grehan earned Category 3 cards at the PGA Europro Tour Q-School supported by Sky Sports in Oxfordshire.
Galway native Mullarney closed with a five-under 68 at Studley Wood to finish seven strokes behind Sam Broadhurst in a tie for seventh on 13-under par as Raymond made a huge move, firing two eagles and three birdies in a seven-under with a 66 to leap 26 places into a tie for 22nd with Naas ace O’Rourke (69) on 11-under.
Grehan also picked up the maximum category available when he carded a four-under 70 to finish tied 25th on the 10-under par limit as the top 30 and ties earned Category 3 cards.
Killiney’s Eoin Leonard closed with an excellent 68 to finish a shot outside the mark on nine-under with Cork’s John Hickey (68) 55th on seven-under and Shannon’s Danny Brennan (70) tied 64th on five-under.
Leonard and Hickey will have Category 6 status while Brennan will be exempt in Category 10.
As for the winner, Broadhurst closed with a nine-under 64, finishing birdie, birdie, eagle to follow in the footsteps of Tyrrell Hatton and Jack Senior with a win at Q-School.
”It's been really good,” said Broadhurst, who win by five strokes on 20-under. “Quite a stressful time, obviously everyone is trying to get their cards for next season. I found my putter and kept rolling them in."
David Hague (Malton & Norton Golf Club) matched Broadhurst with the joint lowest round of the week to take solo second place with Jack Yule (King's Lynn Golf Club) and Paul Maddy (Gog Magog Golf Club) carding 65s to tie for third with Chris Croucher and Jack Floydd.
It was some story for Scotsman Rory Smith (Dalmahoy Golf Club) who started first stage at The Players Club nine over thru 6 before bouncing back to play the next 30 holes better than anyone else to make the cut. Smith continued his 'never say die' mentality with a top ten finish this week signing for days of 68, 69, and 69.
Smith added: "I've grown with the attitude of never give up and never give in. Just try and grind something out. I was two off the cut after the first day."
Q School Supported By Sky Sports, Studley Wood [ST], The Oxfordshire [OX]
1 Sam Broadhurst [ST] Unattached -20 67 67 64 198 £2,400
2 David Hague [ST] Malton & Norton Golf Club -15 71 68 64 203 £2,000
T3 Jack Yule [ST]King's Lynn Golf Club -14 71 68 65 204 £1,360
T3 Paul Maddy [ST] Gog Magog Golf Club -14 68 71 65 204 £1,360
T3 Chris Croucher [ST] UTP Management -14 66 71 62 199 £1,360
T3 Jack Floydd [ST] Haywards Heath Golf Club -14 69 67 68 204 £1,360
Cat. 3 Cards
T7 Ronan Mullarney [ST] Galway Golf Club -13 69 68 68 205 £880
T22 Cameron Raymond [ST St. Annes Golf Club -11 71 70 66 207
T22 Conor O'Rourke [ST] The K Club -11 70 68 69 207
T29 Stuart Grehan [ST] Unattached -10 71 67 70 208
T36 Eoin Leonard [ST] Wentworth Golf Club -9 73 68 68 209
T55 John Hickey [ST] Cork Golf Club -7 71 72 68 211
T64 Daniel Brennan [ST] Shannon Golf Club -5 F 68 75 70 213